For once, primary care organisations are making a good decision here. The UK is the only EU member state that has prescribing incentive schemes involving the substitution of specifically named medicines.
The European Court ruling notes the ban ‘cannot apply to national public health authorities, which are responsible, inter alia, (i) for ensuring the existing rules are applied and (ii) for defining the priorities for action in relation to public health policy, in particular so far as concerns the rationalisation of the public expenditure allocated to that policy’.
But the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry was right to identify that prescribing schemes were a questionable form of intervention on the market (yes, it is a market). Other measures should be adopted, without financial incentive.
The alternative? PCTs are crumbling or have crumbled. SHAs are counting the days to dissolution. What we will end up with if this change does not occur with GP leadership is a quick slide into a demoralised and 100% salaried service.
I might even take an actuarily reduced pension at my age
From Dr Edoardo Cervoni, Preston, via pulsetoday.co.uk